Since there’s no way to simulate how, say, a true rookie like Avery Young will fare in his first test at right tackle against Clemson, the guy lining up next to him, right guard Chad Slade, has gotten creative to mold his mindset.
“The only way I can easily explain it to him,” Slade said, “is to think about (defensive end) Corey Lemonier in front of you with 60 more pounds. It’s going to be just like that. But it’s going to be a different person, different colors and everything like that.”
Good advice. Clemson ends Malliciah Goodman and Corey Crawford each outweigh Lemonier by a solid 25 pounds.
2) We’ll let our Ledger-Enquirer senior editor Chuck Williams take this space.
While speaking in Columbus this week, LSU fan and Democratic political strategist James Carville shared his predictions for the SEC this fall.
“I think Alabama and LSU are clearly the favorites in the West — that seems obvious to me,” he said. “Arkansas should be good, but who knows after all that has happened up there. Nobody knows about Texas A&M. Auburn should be good, but …”
Carville said Georgia is the clear favorite and pointed to the Georgia-South Carolina game as one of the most important in the country.
“Outside of Alabama-LSU, the Georgia-South Carolina game is huge,” he said.
He then went out on a limb, saying Vanderbilt may be the team to watch.
“I will make this prediction, Vanderbilt is going to upset either Georgia or South Carolina,” he said. “They are headed in a good direction.”
3) Dabo Swinney is reverent, if not completely factual, of Kiehl Frazier’s ability.
“He’s a very talented player, highly-recruited. He’s not going to be overwhelmed by this moment,” Swinney said. “He’s been in big games.”
However, Swinney proceeded to exaggerate Frazier’s participation in some of those big games, indicating he started last year at quarterback against LSU and Alabama. Frazier played in all 13 games as a freshman, but never as the starting signalcaller.
“I know he’s coming out of a tough quarterback battle and he won the job,” Swinney said, “so I don’t have any doubt he’s ready to lead his team.”
4) We haven’t made much of this during the week – probably because it was covered in prior years – but Gene Chizik’s first collegiate coaching experience was at Clemson, for two years (1988-89) as a graduate assistant. He earned his Masters degree in guidance and counseling from Clemson in 1991.
5) Silly story out another Columbus, a little further north: reporters covering Ohio State’s press conference with Urban Meyer were surprised – and probably more than a little ticked – to show up and learn they had to drop their weapons.
And by weapons, I mean phones, computers, iPads … any electronic device allowing them to live-tweet Meyer’s comments.
So, basically, reporters listening on the radio or watching the presser on television could tweet to their heart’s desire – just like every other presser in America – but reporters who actually took the time and effort to show up (and probably have the largest followings of Buckeyes fans) were supposed to sit on their hands.
Naturally, Ohio State swiftly lifted the restrictions Tuesday, as reported by the student newspaper.
Either the rule was hastily made without much consideration and the higher-ups realized it was a stupid, petty policy … or Meyer and/or the university had its own reasons, but backed off on them due to media and public pressure.
I’m guessing it’s the latter. But in that case, I mean, really, Ohio State: how did you THINK reporters or fans would react? In a much, much sicker example of public scrutiny, did they not pay attention to that little story out of State College over the past eight months and what happens when a coach or institution views itself as larger than college football?
6) A few statistical career milestones to watch Saturday when Auburn takes on Clemson:
- Senior tight end Philip Lutzenkirchen needs 11 receiving yards for 500 in his career, which would make him the sixth Tiger TE to eclipse the mark.
- Senior receiver Emory Blake needs 81 yards to pass Ben Obomanu (1,313) for membership into the school’s top 15 pass-catchers.
- Senior tailback Onterio McCalebb, with a mere 4-yard catch, will become a top-5 Auburn back in terms of catches and receiving yards. He’d pass Carnell Williams in the latter category.
7) And you thought Auburn was stumbling to the finish line on nailing down starters.
On Clemson’s “two-deep” – might as well call it three- or four-deep – there were a total of eight positions still with two players mentioned as potential starters, including a whopping seven on the defensive side.